Appliance giant, Whirlpool, has been subjected to a parliamentary debate after a petition to recall all of the brand’s faulty tumble dryers received over 100,000 signatures.
Hammersmith MP Andy Slaughter (pictured) opened the debate in Westminster Hall at 2.30pm on 26 April 2017, recounting last August’s events whereby a block of flats within his constituency caught fire as a result of a faulty Indesit tumble dryer.
Slaughter stated “The fire subsequently tore through the block and 120 firefighters had to attend the scene to put out the blaze. The incident resulted in 100 families being evacuated from the block where 26 were then housed in temporary accommodation hotels that night.”
The MP went on to exclaim that “Whirlpool’s complete lack of accountability and responsibility for those consumers whose daily lives have been—and indeed are still being—put at risk, is simply unacceptable.”
Andrew Bingham, High Peak MP, also weighed in on the consequences the dangerous products had within his constituency. He remarked that his constituent “was using her tumble dryer and it actually exploded. Flames went up and hit the roof. She lost pretty much everything and unfortunately she was not insured. Whirlpool seems to have been completely ambivalent about the consequences of these incidents for people’s lives.”
Additionally, when concluding his initial speech, Andy Slaughter strongly criticised the lack of proactive behaviour within both the government and Whirlpool. He retorted “If, when the new parliament is elected, we still do not have satisfactory answers, I hope that whoever then chairs the BEIS Committee will pursue the matter with the Government and Whirlpool.”
Responding to the petition after the debate, Parliament retorted “The Government has set up a Working Group to look at options to improve Product Recalls and Safety, and is in close contact with the enforcing authority working with Whirlpool to rectify this issue.”
Speaking to Whirlpool, after the Parliamentary debate concluded, they stated “Safety is always our number one priority. Since the launch of this corrective action campaign we have gone to extraordinary lengths to trace owners of the affected products and rectify the issue, making direct contact with millions of consumers.
“We fully support the Government’s efforts to improve the UK product safety system and have offered to assist in any way we can.”UK Government and Parliament Petitions | petition.parliament.uk